In this blog, we are going to explore the common myths around mental health conditions, and how these myths affect the person living with the condition.
Mental health problems are a sign of weakness
Clients may feel they are to blame in some way for causing their mental health problems and that they can cure themselves or control it.
Sharing feelings and concerns about mental health takes a lot of courage and strength, and admitting to one’s self that there may be a problem is difficult and upsetting.
The time to change organisation uses the ‘ask twice’ campaign. It has some good ways to start that first conversation.
When someone attempts suicide, it is a cry for help
There are lots of myths and misconceptions about suicidal feelings. Time to change states that:
- > Many people who take actions to end their lives want to die even if they survive and come to a different perspective later.
- > Even for those who would like someone to intervene, if someone is so desperate, they are willing to risk their lives, they need attention and compassion, not judgment and dismissal.
More information can be found here.
It is important to be direct if someone expresses suicidal feelings, talking about it is not easy but by asking them honestly if they have a specific plan or feel unsafe, you can find out the best way to support them.
People with Mental Health Conditions are Violent
People with mental health conditions are no more likely to be violent than anyone else. Unfortunately, they are over 10 times more likely to be victims of violence.
Studies which link mental health to violence have focused on psychotic disorders such as schizophrenia.
To read more click here.
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a military disease
PTSD is a type of anxiety disorder and can happen to anyone who experiences a trauma such as domestic abuse, rape or sexual assault, a natural disaster, a death or difficult childbirth.
It could be that the trauma was not suffered by the person directly but witnessed by them.
Symptoms can include flashbacks to the event, anxiety and panic attacks and trying to avoid reminders or things that may trigger a flashback.
To read more click here.
If you would like to learn more about mental health conditions and how to support someone living with a condition then take a look at the L2 Award in Mental Health Awareness – click here to find out details. It covers mental health first aid too. Anyone can access this training and it can benefit you, your family and friends plus clients.